Page 1

Volume II

PLANNING BY DOING HOW SMALL, CITIZEN-POWERED PROJECTS INFORM LARGE PLANNING DECISIONS

Prepared by:

February, 2016


Gehl – Planning by Doing

2

www.gehlstudio.com Project Team: Jeff Risom - Partner Blaine Merker - Team Lead Anna Muessig - Project Manager Camilla Siggaard Andersen - Designer Qianqian Ye - Designer

Special Thanks

San Francisco Planning Department, City Design Group and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

This report was funded with support from:

Noun project icon by Christoph Robausch, p 17 Cover photograph courtesy Tommy Lau, Public Ping Pong Tables, Galen Maloney, Noah Marjani, Dominic Fontana, Joaquin Sorro, and Andy Co Opposite page photograph: courtesy SF City Planning via flickr, Understory, SITELAB Urban Studio Back cover courtesy SF City Planning via flickr


1

“The idea that action should only be taken after all of the answers and the resources have been found is a sure recipe for paralysis. The planning of a city is a process that allows for corrections; it is supremely arrogant to believe that planning can be done only after every variable has been controlled.�

- Jaime Lerner Mayor of Curitiba, Brazil


Gehl – Planning by Doing

How to use this document Gehl Studio conducted an evaluation and analysis of the Market Street Prototyping Festival to connect the Festival’s process and outcomes with the urban design goals of the Better Market Street Project; festival funders’ goal of promoting diverse, integrated public spaces that support civic life; and YBCA’s goals around creative placemaking and generating culture that moves people. This evaluation, and the recommendations that result from it, are summarized in two documents:

VOLUME II

PLANNING BY DOING HOW SMALL, CITIZEN-POWERED PROJECTS INFORM LARGE PLANNING DECISIONS

Prepared by:

1. Makers on Market summarizes key findings and insights from the Festival, identifies prototypes with potential of influencing the design of Market Street, and outlines a framework for using prototyping events as a way to engage members of the public in finding solutions to public challenges.

Photograph courtesy SF Planning Department via flickr, SHOWBOX, Jensen Architects

2. This document: Planning by Doing is a guide for citizen-powered, citysanctioned public space pilot projects in San Francisco and beyond. It outlines key questions to ask at the outset of a project, details different ways to structure an action-oriented planning project, and provides evaluation protocol. This document is for civic leaders, planners, citizen activists, arts organizations, and others seeking to use prototyping and other Action-Oriented tools to make change in their cities.


3

CONTENTS PART I Planning by Doing

Defining “Action Oriented Planning”

PART II Steps to a Successful Project Three key steps in the iterative loop • Empowering Change • People-First Success Criteria • Eye-Level Project Evaluation

PART III Case Studies: Scaling Up Iterating Action-Oriented Planning to expand impact • Six Case Studies • Market Street Prototyping Festival


4

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Photograph courtesy Tommy Lau, Common Ground, Cloud-Arch Studio


5

PART I

PLANNING BY DOING Defining “Action-Oriented Planning”


6

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Introduction Action-Oriented Planning Need for a new planning approach The current process of public realm planning in the United States typically takes a linear path towards realizing a project, with a limited time-frame for community input. Though improved from an earlier era of planning marked by lack of public engagement, the system has developed in such a way that often gives people who want to stop progress the most prominence. Action-Oriented Planning aims to reverse this tendency by actively encouraging and inviting yes-sayers to take part in a process that makes real use of their input. Brief history of engagement in planning Between the 1950s-80s, urban renewalera “campaigns,” instigated by politicians and undertaken by city planners, ushered in strategic planning projects and large

scale infrastructure projects that expanded highways and built skyscrapers in almost all US cities. This top-down approach was challenged and ultimately replaced between the 1980s-2000s by a focus on community engagement and consultation, prioritizing the human experience, community desires, and marginalized groups. Unfortunately, an unanticipated consequence of the success of communitydriven planning is that many projects end up getting stalled in a formal decision-making process. Overworked and underfunded, municipal divisions are often unable to do meaningful outreach, or have outreachfatigue. Historic lows in civic participation nationwide, the increasingly complex and dynamic nature of cities, and the fact that community involvement is often hijacked by

a vocal minority, mean many communities have developed a culture of “no” rather than a culture of possibility. City managers and other development agents adjust presentations and expectations so as to make as few changes as possible as a result of public feedback. The system of community outreach in our urban change process is not fully leveraging residents as resources, in part because of this well-meaning, but poorly functioning process. The result is an expensive and timeintensive outreach processes that has little impact on development projects; dedicated community advocates frustrated by both planning fatigue and by not having their input taken seriously; and the mediocrity of design-by-committee.

EXAMPLES OF OTHER ACTION-ORIENTED PLANNING PROJECTS

THE YARD AT MISSION ROCK

A pop-up neighborhood testing open space, food, drink, and retail concepts on an existing parking lot in advance of a large waterfront development. San Francisco, CA.

THE MOVEMENT CAFÉ

A temporary cafe on the future site of a real estate development, intended to catalyze growth. Greenwich, London, GB

GAP FILLER

A series of artist-and community-led actions and structures initially launched to bring life back to a downtown decimated by an earthquake. Christchurch, NZ


PART I – Planning by Doing

A platform for “yes” Culture at large is full of good, bold ideas to make our cities better for people. We just often don’t have the right system set up to take advantage of them. While no silver bullet, the mindset and suite of tools we are calling “Action-Oriented Planning” is intended to re-introduce legitimate community feedback into the process. Action-Oriented Planning uses pilot projects as community engagement tools in-and-of-themselves, and as tools to learn about how design decisions actually hit the ground, thereby improving the final implementation. Artists and community activists have long used the transformational power of physical experience to argue for alternative futures. The inventiveness of these insurgent actors has increasingly

DINNER FOR 500

Community dinner on a to-be-decommissioned highway to discuss future uses of this new urban space. Akron, Ohio

been borrowed by traditional institutions of urban change. As stakes are higher, budgets smaller, and communities more vocal, cities have turned to these action-oriented tactics to break through stalemates, generate new ideas for old problems, and to meaningfully engage communities in the process. Action-Oriented Planning is distinguished from “Tactical Urbanism” by an increased emphasis on measurement and evaluation as the guiding star of strategy. Pilot projects can be worthless without strategic vision or when support for iteration is missing. Measuring impacts is one way to stay true to a strategic vision and to engage many perspectives by telling stories through objective measures.

BUILD A BETTER BLOCK

Full-scale, low-resolution replicas of desired amenities and streetscape designs, enacted in a short timeframe to demonstrate potential. Various sites.

A guide for practitioners This report defines practices of ActionOriented Planning. It is intended as a howto for urban change managers interested in engaging communities in new ways to reach better outcomes in their cities. The following sections outline how Action-Oriented Planning layers on to the traditional planning process, how to approach a pilot project, and how to establish evaluation and measurement methods. It creates typologies of projects using case studies that highlight the behind-the-scenes work involved, and the scale and timeframe of successful projects. Happy action-ing!

OPEN STREETS

Temporary closure of iconic routes to vehicular traffic makes way for a temporary experience of a street for people. Various sites.

7


8

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Project Process Action-Oriented Planning in Context NEW TOOLS FOR PLANNING This table identifies the relationship between traditional planning and ActionOriented Planning. Both approaches can lead to success and come with tradeoffs to consider. They often occur as complements of one another.

Theme

Public Engagement Citizen engagement and feedback is expressed through argument and stated preference Engagement is usually “off-site”

Ideation

Action-Oriented Planning is a strong political tool for decision-making, as it directly shows how changes to the public realm affect city life. This process of showing the opportunities, rather than simply telling, is usually manifested in a “pilot project” or “prototype.” Both terms refer to the idea of implementing an interim project at a 1:1 scale to gain more knowledge about what type of intervention is most appropriate to address an identified need.

Traditional Planning

Focused on strategic vision

Envisioning

• • •

1:1 - experienced at human scale. User-powered - ideas generated (or highly influenced) by the public Feedback loop - iterative process incorporates lessons from evaluation Multidisciplinary - different perspectives bring new solutions to old problems Rapid testing of solutions - Tests are always “working prototypes” for future solutions

Projects create direct links between citizen, action and leaders - the project is usually “on-site”

Possibilities of tests are sometimes limited by existing conditions Focused on strategic vision

The project “site” is usually narrowly defined

Unlocks more civic assets as potential “sites”

The context or framework of the problem is strictly bounded

Enlarges the context of the problem or opens up for new context opportunities

Relies on graphic representation to envision what is possible - it “tells”

Uses built examples to envision what is possible - it “shows”

Requires design background and literacy to understand possibilities

Everyday citizens can experience the vision in real life and real time.

KEY ELEMENTS OF ACTION-ORIENTED PLANING

• •

Citizen engagement and feedback is expressed through use and demonstrated preferences

Many ideas can be represented; testing A small number of ideas can be tested relies on analysis and argument rapidly Bigger changes in existing conditions can be tested, but at larger risk and cost

Use of City Space

Action-Oriented Planning

Makeshift installations can fall short of the project’s ultimate potential

Design Vision

Design tends to be conservative, responding to a smaller set of consensus needs

Design can take risks and it responds quickly to changing and diverse needs

Risk Profile

Mistakes are difficult, expensive and take a long time to undo

The public may like the temporary intervention more than the full strategic vision

It can be difficult to engage key stakeholders

Negative Feedback

The project tries to avoid negative feedback at all costs Criticism is high risk

Makeshift, “low-resolution” installations can undermine the high quality long-term vision The project welcomes any kind of feedback; it makes the final project even better Criticism is low risk


PART I – Planning by Doing

NOT NECESSARILY “EASIER” THAN TRADITIONAL PLANNING VISIBLE PROCESS - Physically Highly Visible - Implemented Quickly - Affordable (in the short-term)

UNDER THE SURFACE - Political Outreach - Surveys and Research - Informational Meetings - Capacity Building - Knowledge Sharing - Evaluation Resources Essential to any Action-Oriented Planning approach is effort and coordination that often cannot be seen on the surface. The groundwork that must precede any kind of intervention, and the evaluation work that happens during and after, are both extensive processes, requiring time and resources. If some of these steps taking place “under the surface” are not considered, it is at the risk of the success of the overall project and goal. However, if the “invisible” tasks are carried out well, then the visible part of the project - the actual intervention - can be invaluable to catalyze change.

9


10

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Method Iterating for Public Life Action-Oriented Planning uses a “Measure-Test-Refine” method to evaluate options in a low risk environment with maximum input from members of the public and other urban stewards. With these three steps, interim initiatives are tested and evaluated to inform more permanent and refined decision making.

MEASURE

TEST

Public Space Measure existing public space using qualitative and quantitative assessment tools. Study the quality of facades and the functions in the buildings surrounding the public space.

User Experience and Needs Investigate people’s needs through intercept studies, both qualitative and quantitative. Questionnaires must be completed by at least 1,000 people to be representative for a quantitative study. Anecdotes and personal experiences can be collected from just a few representative users.

E FIN RE INE F RE E FIN E R

E FIN E R INE F RE E FIN E R

TES T TES T TES T

Measure existing public life using observational studies, quantitative data collection, and qualitative surveys. Measure pedestrian counts and flows, types of stationary activities and user diversity and demographics.

TES T TES T TES T

Public Life

EUERAESURE MEA MSEUARSM

EUERAESURE MEA MSEUARSM

TES T

TES T TES T

E FIN E R INE F RE E FIN E R

EUERAESURE MEA MSEUARSM

REFINE

Establish New Behavior

Better Chance of Success

Implement a pilot project that answers some of the needs established through the measure phase. Test how the use of the public space changes when the physical environment is altered. Are there new patterns of usage and users?

Use the learnings from the first two phases to refine the project’s next steps and/or permanent implementation. The next project implementation should have an even better chance of success based on the feedback loop.

Feedback on Experience Investigate people’s new needs based on the impact of the pilot project on the public space and public life. Are users more or less happy to spend time in the public space? Are all socioeconomic groups represented?

Evaluate Consider how the project has been successful, how it could be more successful, and whether there is a basis for more tests or for permanent implementation.

Investment Benefits Long-term projects will be more cost-efficient and resilient if their performance has been tested and evaluated in advance. If the first pilot project does not reach the goals, consider running more tests until the right needs are met.

Acceptance and Ownership Projects that grow out of tests of real needs are more likely to be adopted by the community, which ensures long-term use and therefore a more successful project.


PART I – Planning by Doing

11

EXAMPLES OF APPLIED “MEASURE-TEST-REFINE” METHOD

São Paulo, Brazil

Measure Before: Empty plaza with metro fences

Test Everyday activation: a place is defined by wooden

Refine Special event activation: a destination is

and parking

decks and movable urban furniture

established with cultural programs and evening activities

The Porch at 30th Street Station, Philadelphia, USA

Measure Before: the space in front of the station

Test Project Phase 1: the plaza is pedestrianized and

Refine Project Phase 2: Semi-permanent installation,

is a parking area and no one lingers there

movable furniture and a pop-up cafe implemented

The Porch Swings, refines Phase I


12

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Photograph courtesy SF City Planning via flickr, Emoti Bricks, Mithun and MycoWorks


13

PART II

STEPS TO A SUCCESSFUL PROJECT Three key steps in the iterative loop


14

Gehl – Planning by Doing

1. Defining the scope Empowering Change DEFINING OUTCOMES + SCOPE The first step of any Action-Oriented Planning project is to clearly define the focus and purpose of the project, and how it will be implemented. The following checklist is intended to bring clarity to instigators of Action-Oriented-Planning projects at the beginning of their process Project Focus What problem are you solving for? Or, what untapped resources are you trying to reveal? Learning from the Past What has been successful and unsuccessful about other solutions you have tried? Ease of Implementation How feasible is the intervention in terms of time and resources? Who needs to be involved? Do they want to be involved? Who are your prototypers? What disciplines/type of people do you want involved?

Iterative Loop What is your measure/test/refine feedback loop? Who is your audience? What is your platform for feedback? How are you evaluating feedback and measuring success of your prototype?

Alignment with Ongoing Projects Does the project support ongoing city projects? Are there any private initiatives or interests that align (or conflict) with the project?

Public Impact Does the project respond to feedback from public engagement? Will it impact people’s quality of life? How visible will the project be, both physically and via other platforms?

Who is best suited to incorporate lessons into future planning efforts and drive the project forward?

Long-term Perspective Does the project support a long-term strategy? Can it work as a demonstration project for other parts of the city? Does it fit into statistical projections for future challenges and opportunities? Collaboration & Stakeholder Interest Does the project relate to the goals of core stakeholders? Does the project test new stakeholder/implementer relationships that can set an example for other processes?

Finding your Champion

Flexibility & Resilience Can the project adapt to feedback? Is it costly to alter parts of the design or can this be done on a regular basis in response to success? Diversity & Inclusiveness Does the project support a socioeconomically diverse range of stakeholders and users? Does it provide something for an under-represented group in the city? Connectivity & Accessibility Design Development Does the project support walking, biking or public transit? Can the project link together neighborhoods or existing important destinations in the city? Is it accessible?

41

Case Study of Moving Across the Compass

DESIGN ELEMENT

Design for Accessibility Parklet Manual 2.0 (March 2015)

A

B I E

D

E

H G

F

2’

0’

Park(ing)

Park(ing) Day

(2005) User Instigated / Short Term

(2006) User Instigated / Short Term

Parklet Pilots

12’

4’

C

EQUIVALENT FACILITIES

A

ACCESSIBLE PATH OF TRAVEL

D

WHEELCHAIR TURNING SPACE

G

B

ACCESSIBLE ENTRY

E

WHEELCHAIR RESTING SPACE

H

STEP BETWEEN TERRACES

C

ACCESSIBLE DECK SURFACE

F

WHEELCHAIR COMPANION SEATING

I

BUFERED EDGE WHERE CURB DROPS AWAY

Parklet Design Standards

Wheelchair User Companion Seating. If fixed seating is part of parklet design, it should be configured to accommodate companion seating for a wheelchair user. The Wheelchair Resting Space should permit shoulder-toshoulder alignment adjacent to one side of the fixed seat.

from the front and provide an unobstructed knee clearance that is at least 27 inches high, 30 inches wide and 19 inches deep. When movable tables are provided in lieu of fixed, at least one of the movable tables must also be accessible.

Equivalent Facilities. Where tables, counters, or drink rails are provided, at least one of each feature should be wheelchair accessible.

have 36 inch wide and level space adjacent to it for a side-approach by a wheelchair user.

(2009) Officially Managed / Short term

countertop facilities to those found in other habitable terraces. Wheelchair Accessible Entry. The accessible terrace will require a wheelchair accessible entry from the sidewalk. The wheelchair accessible entry may be achieved with a structure on the sidewalk within the sidewalk furnishing zone that provides transition between the sidewalk and parklet deck.

(2015) Where drink rails are provided, a 60 / Long term Officially Managed inch long portion of a drink rail shall Terraced or Multi-Level Parklets.

Ramps, Steps, and Stairs. Communication between terrace


PART II – Steps to a Successful Project

SCOPE COMPASS

+ The project can align with other official initiatives

A tool to understand how a project can be scoped and implemented at different scales, timeframes, and typologies

Instigated/Managed Officially

+ The project can adapt easily to feedback

+ The project can create sufficient impact

- The project might not align with the needs of the users

- The project might not align with the needs of the users

- The project might not create sufficient impact

and finish here

Short-Term /Temporary

+ The project has ownership amongst the users

- The project might have difficulty adapting to feedback

Long-Term /Permanent a project might start here

move to here

+ The project has ownership amongst the users + The project can create sufficient impact

+ The project can adapt easily to feedback

- The project might not align with other projects in the city

- The project might not align with other projects in the city - The project might not create sufficient impact

+ The project aligns with other official initiatives

Instigated/Managed by the Users

- The project might have difficulty adapting to feedback + pro - con

15


16

Gehl – Planning by Doing

2. Setting Goals People-First Success Criteria Short-term projects provide lessons that planners and urban change agents can apply over the long-term using a Measure/ Test/Refine method. Clear metrics are essential to set benchmarks and assess the success of prototypes. Measuring prototype performance against success criteria can help vet potential prototype concepts, guide iteration, and evaluate success. Each project must define its own criteria of success early in the process. As the process moves forward, these could change. Below are example goals from the Market Street Prototyping Festival.

SAMPLE GOALS + EVALUATION METRICS A STREET FOR PEOPLE

ENGAGED COMMUNITIES

SHARED CIVIC SPACES

aastreet for for people people astreet street for people evaluation questions

engaged engaged communities communities engaged communities evaluation questions

shared shared civic civic space space shared civic space evaluation questions

Were communities engaged in the prototyping process?

How did the prototype reflect the wishes of the neighborhoods it is in?

How successful was the prototype in inviting diverse audiences in terms of age, gender, neighborhood, income, and racial identification?

Did the prototype present opportunities for mixing between people of different backgrounds?

How successful was the prototype in creating more invitations for lingering and walking? Did the prototype improve the perception of this place for a diversity of users?

sparking sparking creativity creativity sparking creativity

building building capacity capacity building capacity

opportunity opportunity and and access access opportunity and access


s

PART II – Steps to a Successful Project

shared a street civic for space people

OPPORTUNITY AND ACCESS

engaged communities

BUILDING CAPACITY

shared civic space

LONGEVITY

shared civic space

opportunity and access sparking creativity evaluation questions

evaluationbuilding questionscapacity

opportunity and access evaluation questions

How successful was the prototype in building social capital and skills in its participants and organizers?

Did the prototype present opportunities for mixing between people of different backgrounds?

How successful was the prototype in bringing new resources and services to the street that expand cultural and economic opportunity and access? Did the prototype present opportunities for mixing between people of different backgrounds?

Is this prototype set up to succeed during the time it is installed? Are proper maintenance and management entities stewarding its success?

17


18

Gehl – Planning by Doing

3. Evaluation Eye-Level Project Evaluation Evaluation occurs at the scale of impact, at eye level, the human scale. To be robust, evaluation occurs before, during, and after the prototyping process.

EVALUATE THE BASELINE

MEASURE SUCCESS INDICATORS

EVALUATE PROJECT SUCCESS

Before

During

After

Measuring a baseline before implementation is important to understanding impact.

The success criteria/indicators must be defined according to each project’s defined goals and criteria of success. These are examples.

Be sure to evaluate success from different perspectives. The learnings can be used to adapt other/future interventions.

Publicly Available Statistics - Reduction in traffic injuries - More public transportation users

1. City Perspective Focus on learning: What worked and what did not work? What issues (positive and negative) arose from implementation? Which issues (positive and negative) stem from the planning process? Are the issues design or program related? What unexpected opportunities (partners, usage of space, spin-off activities) appeared before, during and after the process?

Certain success criteria need a baseline to compare against. Be sure to set time aside to evaluate baseline conditions before you begin a project if this is the case. A baseline could mean a survey of the general public, core stakeholders, and/or designers or implementers.

Observational Analysis - Increase in pedestrian activity - Increase in people on bikes - More people lingering - Greater variety of activities Qualitative Analysis - Better quality of urban environment - More active frontages - New functions or more diverse functions Surveys and Interviews - New social encounters - Stronger sense of community - Increased feeling of safety - Increased sense of identity - Public capacity building Engagement and Social Media - Spontaneous programs happen - Increase in social media hits - Positive business and retail impact - Engaged local stakeholders

2. User Perspective Focus on experience: How does this impact the user’s everyday routine? What is in it for the user? Did the user come away thinking that the public sector has his/her best interest in mind? Where/how/when is it possible for the user to have a say in these action-oriented initiatives? 3. Maker Perspective Focus on creation: How were implementers’ unique knowledge of design taken into consideration? Were they supported as creative citymakers? Did the project build their social capital and skills?


PART II – Steps to a Successful Project

EXAMPLES OF WAYS TO MEASURE IMPACT ON PUBLIC LIFE AND AT EYE LEVEL Desktop Research

Social Media Analysis

Online Surveys

Intercept Surveys

Engagement records keep track of engagement + other public data collection

Analyzing metadata of social media posts from project area during and after the intervention

Online surveys of the general public, community stakeholders, and designers to gauge impact of the intervention

Intercept surveys conducted with users of the site before, during and/or after the initiative has been implemented

Observational Analysis

Prototype Evaluation

Quantitative data sets of pedestrian counts, age and gender registrations and observations of different types of staying activities

The prototype can be measured against its own success criteria. Or, if there are multiple prototypes, measured against common criteria.

Photo Documentation

In-Depth Interviews

Before, during and after photo Interviews with specific users and comparisons can be strong indicators stakeholders to gain a detailed insight of a project’s physical impact into the project’s performance

19


20

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Photograph courtesy SF City Planning via flickr, Peepshow, David Baker Architects


21

PART III

CASE STUDIES: SCALING UP Iterating Action-Oriented Planning to expand impact


22

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Case Studies Typologies of Action What was the goal?

1

Scope Compass Instigated/Managed Officially

PARK(ING) DAY Worldwide / 2005-present Insurgent Project + Tactical Project

Showing that car space is also public space that can be used for people activities instead

Short-term

Long-term

Instigated/Managed by the Users

2

Instigated/Managed Officially

TIMES SQUARE New York, USA / 2008-present Full-Scale Test + Demonstration Project

Creating a flagship project for the NYC Plaza program to catalyze the Short-term reimagination of public space

Long-term

Instigated/Managed by the Users

3

Instigated/Managed Officially

OPEN STREETS Worldwide / 1974-present Tactical Project + Full-Scale Test

Reimagining the role of streets to connect people across neighborhoods and demographics

Short-term

Long-term

Instigated/Managed by the Users

4

VILLAGE ÉPHÉMÈRE Montreal, CA / 2013-present Regeneration Catalyst + Tactical Project

5

Bringing attention to some of Montreal’s underused public spaces with untapped potential

Instigated/Managed Officially

Short-term

Instigated/Managed by the Users Instigated/Managed Officially

THE PORCH Philadelphia, USA / 2011-present Full-Scale Test + Demonstration Project

Making the area in front of the 30th Street Station a lively place where people want to stay

Short-term

Long-term

Instigated/Managed by the Users

6

Instigated/Managed Officially

PROTOTYPING FESTIVAL San Francisco, USA / 2015 Process Pilot + Tactical Project

Generating bold ideas from the general public to incorporate into “Street Life Zones”

Short-term

Instigated/Managed by the Users


PART III – Case Studies: Scaling Up

A key characteristic of Action-Oriented Planning is that actions often build momentum. Involving communities, agencies, and other stewards of urban change in short-term, experimental solutions to complex problems means that when actions iterate, they often scale up, too. Scaling up can mean a physical increase in size - from a parking lot intervention to a global one-day event - to an increased duration - from a one-day pop-up to a summer-long event. The following Action-Oriented Planning case studies were selected because they represent this spectrum of scale as well as different typologies on the “scope compass.” What was the action? To temporarily repurpose parking space To provide open source instructions for replication by anyone, anywhere To collect worldwide photos and stories of people participating in and contributing to the concept

To temporarily pedestrianize Times Square

What was the outcome? Global movement grows to repurpose parking spaces as people spaces Communities use event as organizing tool

Was there long-term impact? Cities form parklet programs to allow longer impact New streetscape typology is established for permanent installations

Cities provide increasing support

Bold action and incentive to win over “nay-sayers”

To test alternative traffic conditions on Broadway

Building a shared understanding of the use and

To create a flagship project and a full-scale test of the NYC Plaza Program as inspiration for the wider initiative

usability of civic space

Times Square is now permanently a pedestrian plaza with granite paving and well-designed urban furnishings

A pilot project became a successful permanent project

To close car corridors for the purpose of allowing pedestrians and bicyclists to take over the space

Global movement to reclaim the streets on a

To provide open source instructions for replication by

temporary basis, usually combined with events

anyone, anywhere

Today, cities all over the world host “Open Streets” and in some cases the opening of the streets to the pedestrians has also created the basis for permanent pedestrianizations

To reduce pollution in car-dependent metropolises

To make a temporary village “environment” with design installations, basic seating structures and activities To give local designers and architects a public platform To activate an empty site in the city

To put out inexpensive furnishings and plants To curate food and events To observe, measure and learn from who stays, where, how long & why

To provide 50 small sites and budgets To curate the city’s best user-generated ideas To facilitate 250,000 visitors and observers over three days

Citizens were using a part of the city that they rarely visited

One of the sites of a “Village Éphémère” intervention,

A public temporary intervention has become permanent

a former snow-storage site, is now being continuously

and adopted by the local community and private

re-appropriated for events and art-related activities

stakeholders

Space becomes popular and defines district identity Reinvestment into higher quality design and furnishings Continued observation & measurement

Provided a template for envisioning an enlivened University City District Design is being formalized and expanded to surrounding parts of the District

Many people encounter the event who aren’t reached by

Better Market Street Plan to incorporate

traditional outreach

greater emphasis on programming

Most innovations involve sociability, public art and

Sites for rotating user generated content

programming

incorporated in street redesign

Several ideas rise to next round

New template for community engagement

23


24

Gehl – Planning by Doing

Case Studies Scaling up Actions SCALE Region

Open Streets, Worldwide (2015)

City 3

Open Streets, Bogotá (1974-)

District

6

Prototyping Festival (2015)

Block

Site

1

4

Park(ing) (2005)

Hours

Park(ing) Day (2006)

Village Éphémère (2013)

Days

Weeks


PART III – Case Studies: Scaling Up

25

This diagram maps six Action-Oriented Planning case studies onto two axes, physical scale and time. Several case studies have had more than one iteration in which they have transformed scale, some of them increasing their duration and physical scale with each iteration.

NYC Plaza Program (ongoing)

5

2

Better Market Street (2012-2018)

The Porch (2011)

Times Square (2008)

The Porch (2015)

Village Éphémère (2014 + 2015)

Village Au Pied du Courant (2016)

Living Innovation Zone (2014)

Parklet Program (2010)

Months

Years

TIME


26

Gehl – Planning by Doing → marketstreetprototyping.org

San Francisco, US Market St Prototyping Festival PROJECT TIMELINE 2011

Better Market Street (BMS) launches

May 2014

October 2014

MSPF call for submissions

selections announced

Fall 2013

February 2014

August 2014

October 2014

BMS visioning complete Street Life Zones & LIZ codified

First Living Innovation Zone opened

Community Idea Lab

social media launch

Key Project Components Strong collaboration between City agency and civic nonprofit organization Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and the San Francisco Planning Department staff co-led the Festival, with the leadership balanced between the organizations.

Arts funding + city planning objectives YBCA, an arts organization, acted as the fiscal sponsor and channeled funding from arts and civic philanthropy.

On-brand Prototyping, making and innovating are part of the Bay Area’s brand. The Festival had key political support from the Mayor’s Office and department heads.

PLANNING CONTEXT Better Market Street (BMS) is a comprehensive program to reconstruct San Francisco’s chief cultural, civic and commercial corridor and the region’s most important transit street from Octavia Boulevard to The Embarcadero, a distance of 2.3 miles. The street is scheduled for physical reconstruction beginning 2019—a twice-per-century chance to rethink how space is allocated and how the street is designed. Market Street contains almost all transit lines serving the city, including BART (regional rail) and Muni Metro (subway), both underground, as well as city buses, taxis, and the city’s busiest bicycle route. Multiple city public agencies are involved in the process, including Public Works, City Planning and SFMTA. After an extensive public visioning and preliminary planning process, several conceptual design options began environmental review through California’s EIR process. A concept that emerged during the visioning process was “Street Life Zones” or places within the wide thoroughfare where staying activities could flourish through new designs and programs. From this seed grew “Living Innovation Zones”—a curated, long-term test of designs by local stewards—and the Market Street Prototyping Festival, an open event where anyone could propose an idea for Market Street.

Agency staff ready to experiment

THE PROJECT

Several years of exposure to pilot projects, reviewing parklet designs, and operating in increasingly “experiment mode” prepared Public Works and SFMTA staff to support unconventional installations in public.

Market Street Prototyping Festival took place between April 9-11, 2015, inviting designers, artists and makers to connect with the diverse neighborhoods along Market Street to develop and test ideas that enliven the sidewalks. The Festival prototyped Better Market St.’s concept of Street Life Zones, multiuse areas located within the existing sidewalk that invite diverse public life, “lingering” activities and a stronger district identity. After an open public call for submissions, fifty projects were curated by a jury of local design leaders. Project teams were provided $2,000 each to realize their projects during the three days of the festival.

Tapping into local talent The Bay Area has a large number of professional and amateur “makers”—designers, tinkerers, artists—who are passionate about public space.


PART III – Case Studies: Scaling Up

$

$250,000 materials $1,000,000 in-kind time

250,000 viewers 500+ designer/makers 25 organizers

Investment

Participation

S XS S XS S XS M S MS M S LM L XL MLXL L XL L XLXL

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts

Department of City Planning Public Works Transportation Mayor’s Office

Instigated/Managed Officially

Short-term

The physical scale of the project, as well as its reach, were “large”.

District Captains Long-term

Designers

Instigated/Managed by the Users

Size

Community Cohort

Organization

Leadership

Nov 2014/Jan 2015

community outreach tours

April 9-11, 2015

June 2016

June 2018

Festival

BMS final design begins

final design complete

January 2015

Fall 2015

June 2017

2019

design charrette

BMS conceptual design complete

EIR clearance

construction begins on Market St

MEASURES OF SUCCESS A Prototyping Festival had never been tried in such a central place in San Francisco, so when no major issues resulted from fifty user-generated projects installed in the city’s busiest sidewalk for three days (no small feat for the producers), the project cleared a major hurdle. The more ambitious goals for the project included improving Market as a “street for people” by inviting for lingering, adding to the diversity of street users, and improving perceptions of the street. As a process, the Festival was evaluated on its ability to engage communities both in the production of the event and in experiencing the ideas proposed. In most all of these measures, the Festival was successful. Pedestrian movement increased by 30% during the Festival and lingering activities increased by 55 to 175%. By virtue of its public presence on the street (73% of participants ran into by chance), the event reached a much wider audience than BMS’s outreach process. Finally, the Festival indeed generated many useful new ideas for Market Street.

Smaller and Upsidedown

OUTCOMES & IMPACT In September, six projects were re-installed for one-month to test their durability and community appeal. The lessons from this iteration will inform BMS and other prototyping efforts. As of this report, Festival producers and city planners are still working to extract the insights to apply to the longterm capital improvement project of Better Market Street, as well as general lessons for the City’s public outreach process. The Festival’s strongest immediate impact may be on cities’ ideas about outreach. Thanks to close observation by visitors from other cities throughout the Festival, enthusiasm for replication has been widespread. The Festival made it clear that intensive programming and staffing buoyed the successful prototypes—an insight that could influence development of BMS’s eventual Street Life Zones.

Outpost, Studio for Urban Projects

27


Planning By Doing  
Planning By Doing